A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole

duncesRecommended by Mr. Muth

“I mingle with my peers or no one, and since I have no peers, I mingle with no one.”
― John Kennedy TooleA Confederacy of Dunces

In the novel A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole, we follow the life of Ignatius J. Reilly, a large and flatulent man living in New Orleans.  Ignatius is a modern day Don Quixote because of his eccentric, humorous and often delusional lifestyle.  A Confederacy of Dunces reminds me of Humboldt’s Gift by Saul Bellow because both main characters are self-righteous and creative about their personal philosophies on life, however ridiculous those might be.  In both novels, it is truly the main character that makes the story.  This novel is unique because the author that wrote it was turned down by countless publishers before Toole eventually took his own life.  Eventually his mother had the book published, and it won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1981.  This is one of the only novels that I actually laughed out loud while reading on more than one occasion.  The reader is immediately hooked to the characters and story making it nearly impossible to put the book down.  Although some of the subjects tackled in A Confederacy of Dunces are a bit strong, the story can be viewed as thought provoking and hilarious at the same time.  I would give this book a 5 out of 5 stars.  You should read this book if you have a good sense of humor and appreciate an easy read every now and then.